LaDonna Bohling is the trainer’s trainer. She is the person that people in the industry, and even the industry’s largest trade groups, turn to when an expert is needed about talk about training. She is one of the leaders in a movement to teach the importance of treating consumers with respect and dignity. She has actively served with the Georgia Collectors Association.
Name: LaDonna Bohling
Company: Contract Callers, Inc.
Length of time at current company: 21 years
Length of time in industry: 24 years
How did you get your start in the industry?
I started working first-party finance approving and collecting on small-to-medium sized loans in 1982.
What is your career highlight so far?
Being selected to train other industry professionals on the laws that govern us and consumer communications.
Which industry professional do you admire most?
This is a tough question. Through the years I have worked with so many industry professionals and they all stand out. Some of the most admired by me are Leslie Bender, Debra Ciskey, John Bedard and Harry Strausser. These professionals have given me advice, encouragement and shared knowledge with me through the years.
What is one thing you do better than everyone else?
Motivate others to get excited and involved. It is hard to spend time with me and not get caught up in the passion and respect that I have for this industry.
When or how are you most productive?
My most productive hours are in the early morning. This is the time when the office is empty, the phones are silent, and I can formulate a game plan.
What do you like most about this industry?
I like the challenges that this industry produces causing us to stay on our toes and work through the challenges.
What is one thing you wish you could change about this industry?
The negative mindset that the general consumer has about us.
If you weren’t in this industry, what would you be doing?
Not sure, but whatever it was I would be in charge. 🙂
Describe a typical work day.
Arrive at work around 6am and review samples of previous day production, review new client files, coordinate with other departments any new client onboarding in progress, read daily publications from industry associations to see if there is any news or changes that would impact us, and visit a couple of regulatory websites to see what’s brewing. I might also work on our training development within Contract Callers, and most days I am doing some sort of training with our staff. Not to mention client performance calls.
What is your guilty pleasure?
Martial Arts. After a long day at the office that sometimes continues through dinnertime there is nothing I love best than to lose the heels, the dress, the accessories and don a gi and take all my frustrations to the mat.
What is the best advice you’ve ever received?
A boss I had told me to stop being so “long-suffering” with people; that I can’t make people change, that people have to want to change. He told me this during a performance review. From his perspective I spent too much time on folks who didn’t care and he was right. I had to learn how and when to let go.
What are you currently reading?
Snakes in Suits: When Psychopaths Go to Work. A peer and I were lamenting on making bad hiring decisions in the upper management area, we both agreed that we had been taken in on more than one occasion by someone in a “suit” that appeared to be everything we were looking for and more. Another friend suggested we read this book and it might give us insight on how to read people better.
What is one fact you’d like everyone in the industry to know about you?
It’s hard for me to say no.
Who else would you like to see answer these questions?
Judd Peak with Frost-Arnett.